So, something cool happened last night...

I won an award! I'll be totally honest here, I really wasn't expecting one. Wait, let's back up a bit here, let me fill you in. Last night was the opening night of the Swindon Fringe Festival. It's the festival that showcases awesome independent theatre, and the place that, last year, I premiered The Door for public consumption (a year ago!!!!).

It's a great a event and if you haven't had the pleasure of checking out any of the shows, please do. They always have some really interesting stuff on and you can check out their schedule on their website or from one of the brochures you're sure to find around town.

Anyway, last night was the opening. It was held at The Crossing, in the Brunel Centre (seriously, why is this not a regular thing? Get a bar in there and I'd happily go and sit and chill there for an evening. So relaxed. And you should definitely have that stage up permanently) and was really good. It has a great atmosphere, very chilled but also lots of people with whom one might speak. Sadly I haven't got anything in the Fringe this year because... well, I didn't write anything.

"But how did you win an award then, Alex?" I hear you ask.

Well, last night wasn't just the opening of the Swindon Fringe Festival. It was also the final night of the Swindon Independent Film Festival. And as the final night, it also doubled as the Awards Ceremony. Which is very cool.

I won it for my short film Headlights, that you can watch below. It's a micro-short, meaning it comes in at less than 2 minutes in length. Check it out.

The Swindon Independent Film Festival has been something that, for years, I've often thought Swindon needed. I can remember having conversations with people (and by people I mean, specifically my partner Dani) about how there should be a film festival, but whenever anyone suggested putting one on I sort of shook my head and went, "no way, man! I can't deal with that kind of pressure!"

So I have to hand it to Doug Kirby, who organised the whole thing. Obviously as a first year there are going to be the occasional teething problems, but the fact of the matter is it was a really solid and enjoyable event and I'm really gutted that I only managed to make it to one of the sessions. I've heard nothing but praise about the way the festival was done, which is pretty outstanding when you consider it's the first one and it was arranged in such a short period of time.

I had to make an effort to go alone to the closing night, not only because I had the pleasure of having two films entered, but also because I wanted to show my supported and hadn't been able to at the other sessions.

Anyway, I was sat there chatting away with some people when all of a sudden I heard the name of my short film Headlights ring through the area, followed by the sound of applause. A little bemused I discovered that I'd won Best Micro Short! Which is awesome! But also a genuine surprise because, well, I'm not sure I think it was better than some of the others on display.

But that's irrelevant, really. What I want to say is thank you. Thank you so much to the Swindon Independent Film Festival and Doug Kirby, who put on this amazing event and made sure everyone got an awesome award (and he did it all with barely any time!), thank you so much to the Swindon Fringe Festival and Matt Fox, who had The Crossing and enabled this event to take place, thank you so much to Marc Starr, Elle Osborne, Colin Doubleday and Bethany Smith who worked on the film with me, and thank you so much to anyone that's what the film or supported me. I really appreciate it.

I suppose now I'm an award-winning filmmaker as well as an award-winning writer I can officially start to be snobbish and uppity?

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© Alex Secker 2018